Education

Republican Factionalism
September 21, 2009

TNR’s new editorial – which I did not write but do generally agree with – bemoans the deep factionalism that Republican opposition to health care reform has exposed. National Review’s Ramesh Ponnuru objects, "The New Republic's commitment to the idea that minority parties should try to meet majorities halfway is not deep." In fact, the editorial didn’t say that the GOP has an obligation to meet Democrats halfway.

Mislabeled
September 21, 2009

 WASHINGTON -- It's time to cast aside the political shorthand and ideological pigeonholing that distort our debates over health care in particular and government's role in American life more broadly. The way words such as "centrist" and "bipartisan" are now deployed turns the discussion away from useful arguments over how various proposals might work and toward arid talk about how ideas fit into prefabricated boxes. The impact of this warping of reality, brought home daily in the health care fight, was dramatized in last week's debate in the House of Representatives over a bill to expand fed

Is the CBO Biased Against Health Care Reform?
September 17, 2009

A number of CBO-watchers were asking that question when the agency started scoring health care bills a few months back. As Washington and Lee law professor Timothy Stoltzfus Jost put it in Politico: It is much easier to score costs than cost-savings. Legislation pending in both the House and Senate in fact includes state-of-the art proposals that many health policy experts do believe will result in real savings, as the CBO recognizes.

The Love of Dogs. What Do Animal Rights Militants Think Of This?
September 12, 2009

An e-mail to Margo from a girlfriend in Chicago, identity kept secret:  I am just looking at the schedule for my beloved dog’s rehab services. He goes twice a week for the next 8 weeks. He gets laser therapy, water resistance work, massage therapy, adequin injections and perhaps stem cell replacement. He goes to the equivalent of my rehab. It is for all the wealthy dogs in the neighborhood. Should he decide that he would like to stay for longer during the day we can rent a cabana! And I’m worried about health care costs.  

The Centrists’ Take on the Speech: Pretty Darn Good
September 10, 2009

The moderates and centrists critical to ongoing health care negotiations seemed to have found a good deal to their liking in the president’s speech tonight. Senator Olympia Snowe—a central focal point for the TV cameras scanning the chamber—issued a statement tonight that praised the President’s stated desire to bend the cost curve and, just as significantly, to ensure that the bill does not add to the deficit.

The Centrists’ Take on the Speech: Pretty Darn Good
September 10, 2009

The moderates and centrists critical to ongoing health care negotiations seemed to have found a good deal to their liking in the president’s speech tonight. Senator Olympia Snowe—a central focal point for the TV cameras scanning the chamber—issued a statement tonight that praised the President’s stated desire to bend the cost curve and, just as significantly, to ensure that the bill does not add to the deficit.

Cool... But, Yes, Communist
September 10, 2009

He's tall, trim, with shaved head, a confident demeanor, wearing a dark turtleneck, kind 'a funny and Yale Law School. Cool. Co-o-o-l. Or maybe even wow! He's Van Jones, and he resigned on Saturday as what the White House called its "czar" for the environment. There are actually many czars at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in this administration, and I wonder why the historical resonance of the word doesn't just give the Obama crowd the creeps. Unless, of course, they want to govern like czars ... and czarinas. To be sure, Mr.

Obama Back in Top Campaign Form
September 09, 2009

This was the best speech I've heard Barack Obama give as president--possibly the best since January of 2008. Unlike his inaugural address, or even his convention speech, this one really soared and inspired by the end--a bit counterintuitively for a health care speech.

BREAKING: The News in the Speech
September 09, 2009

Looks like there's some news in the speech after all.  Quite a bit. On the policy front, President Obama tonight endorses, clearly and unambiguously, a requirement that everybody obtain insurance--that is, an individual mandate. He has not done that before, not this explicitly. He also says employers will have to provide insurance or bear some of the costs. That's not news exactly; he's said that before.

Read the Speech Now
September 09, 2009

Excerpts of the president’s big health care speech have just been released.

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